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Sunday, October 28, 2007

The Law

Not about the bright coloured things that emerge from warm vans on cold nights every now and then to take the pains in our arses away to become pains in their arses. This is about a question I was asked in the comments here.

non-chav nightclub attendee asked,

"...If you could pass one law, or repeal an existing one, or even just enforce an existing one properly, to make your life easier and the night out for good punters more enjoyable, what would it be?"

I've had a good think about this one and even had a chat with some of the lads about it.

The one I'd pick out to change is off on a tangent a bit but a lot of folk would probably agree given a think on it.
In the child protection legislation I'd like to see either a change of wording or interpretation to include neglecting psychological development as child abuse. If a child is underweight or beaten the child can be protected and most parents see they have responsibility to prevent this abuse. If a person cannot take reasoned moral actions, has no sense of guilt or pride, personal or collective responsibility they will not function in society. If parents felt a need to instill these things, or just the possibility of losing the benny checks if the kids get taken away it would hopefully improve the situation.

We blame schools, parents, gangs, no sunday school, no youth clubs and no scouts/guides for these moral failures in the young. Place the blame/responsibility at one door and keep it there. If help is needed by parents, supply it under social services, just get morals and responsibility into children.

These are skills needed by all people in society and without them social mobility, or even social stability are hard to obtain. The only other way they learn is by drunken incident after drunken incident which leaves them nicked, kicked or up the duff to pass on their moral void to another generation of chavs.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


There are many things people do which are ultimately futile, the stated objective is never realised, but there may be some satisfaction from the pursuit or the hope of completion. For most sports fans this is the case, following a team for any length of time will do this, they will never take over the world and reign for eternity.

In the nightclubbing world almost all the punters efforts are ultimately futile. The money will only keep you in bright coloured alco-pops for so long, the music will only play 'til the end of the night, the beautiful people will only be interested while you keep buying them drinks, the smiling bar staff will stop smiling when the tips dry up.

You may get massively lucky and have a brilliant night, meet a pretty partner and dance like a god/goddess til the music goes off. But you'll be back again next week and the next week, and the next week, and none of them will be as good a night.

I get to deal with a lot of the folks whose desires for the night have fallen far in excess of reality. Some just get over it and either go home or stay and have an OK night. Others take out their shattered hopes on others, staff, punters or their friends and relatives. If you're having a bad night, don't share it, it won't make it better, it'll often just make it shorter. If I have to wander over and sort out your mess of a night, most likely it's already over and it's just you that's waiting to hear the news.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Not walking

Now I get to ask a lot of people to leave. About half take the verbal invite and start walking.

The other half don't. When a punter is on a private licensed premises and they are asked to leave they really should get themselves together and go. The arm indicating which way to walk and the other behind ensuring they don't disappear in the wrong direction entirely usually works.

For a small minority something more is needed. I'm not small, though I'm finding my centre of gravity is a little too high nowadays. That's for another post though. When I apply myself to move someone, they move. It may not be pretty but with an arm in my grasp, I can usually twist, turn or pull it enough to make someone leave at an accelerated speed if needed.

If someone pulls both arms tight in, plants their feet and sets themselves rigid, I might have to pull out the dirty tricks. The funniest one of which is to push one way 'til they shift their feet, then get out the way as they slam themselves to the floor struggling to get their arms out in time. This works well to humiliate as well as surprise them. It also leaves them prone, with big me standing above them. Most can then just be picked up and carried down the nearest fire exit.

Most give up the fight and walk before we get to the top step. I could only imagine why, it's as if they don't trust us not to drop them headfirst on the hard concrete stairs.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Calamity Joe

There are some people who always seem to get it wrong, no matter how hard and concientious they are.

This is not a good trait for a doorman, I work with one of these Joes and it can be bloody hilarious. Imagine the gent who they patiently escort one staggering step at a time to the front door ensuring their safe arrival on the street only to turn to head back inside to hear a loud thump as one drunk hits the hard floor and splits his head open requiring first aid, ambulances and a report writing on it.

Then there's the flying response to an inside fight call in which they accidentally level a drunken lass in their hurry to get there. Only to hear it cancelled one pace later leaving them to apologise and make amends to the drunken lady. Unfortunately it's the area manager's sister who happens to be out celebrating her birthday on freebie drinks in VIP. Could only happen to Joe.

It's not limited to others getting hurt, Joe's the one who finds the bottle that's rolling across the dancefloor and tips himself arse over tit in the busy crowd and has to limp away. He has however been seen taking the pratfall by everyone on the dancefloor and even gets a call out from the DJ as he shuffles off red-faced.

Everyone has one of these moments every now and then but this would be a typical night for calamity Joe

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Unasked questions

Your chance to ask those curious things that have been bugging you about your nights out or the doorstaff you meet. I'll keep an extra eye on this post for comments and get back to you either directly or with a post on the topic.

Meanwhile I'm struck by the large number of questions I never get to ask of people, it's sometimes simply not polite to ask them about the thing that's just struck you as highly intriguing.

For example, questions you're unlikely to hear but slowly eat away at me are,
How did you lose that arm?
Do you only own that 1 top? and how often do you wash it?
What do you do to earn your drinking money when you're in here 6 nights a week spending that much just on booze? And how do you still get paid when you must turn up pissed so many days a week?
Where is your accent from when you're ID says you're from 10 miles away?
Do you have a mirror in your house?
Are you partially sighted?
No, then really why on earth are you wearing that out in public?
Do you really expect me to believe that?
Did you know you're skirt is tucked in your knickers?
How long have you had you're nipple hanging out?
Don't you have a bra that isn't grey? Or can you wear a top that doesn't show most of it?
Have you ever heard of hairdressers?
Are you a haemophiliac or just too lazy to shave?
Really why? No really stop for a bit and why?

These and a thousand other questions crop up in my night but it's just not good professional customer service to ask. If you have any answers to any of these answers on a postcard.

Sunday, October 07, 2007


In this work you've got to keep your mind on the job. Not on the pretty young things dancing about you or the bloke who you're sure you've seen 'from the telly' or that lad you had to kick out last week when he'd had more than a few too many. You need to walk into every situation with your eyes wide open and your ears pricked.

Or you'll either be out of a job or have your arse kicked or if you're unlucky about it both. It's not an easy job standing around in a nightclub, doing not a lot for a long time. It's harder when you don't get yourself distracted in inane chat with regulars or other staff. You've got to do it though or boots will hit backsides literally or figuratively.

I find getting bored is usually a good sign I'm working well. If there's nothing happening to worry about, it's best if there's nothing filling my mind. It leaves space for more folk to worry about, more things to evaluate as and when they emerge. It does make me a grumpy bugger when we have a quiet night but I get the job done and it can't be too bad a thing when you get paid for doing very little and getting very bored.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Swear down

What the hell is going on with 'swearing down'? Where did this useless phrase of alleging honesty come from? It seriously raises my hackles every time some half drunk chav says this to me.

Just the mention of this phrase turns a cynical but potentially persuadable doorman into one extremely obstinate git. I've found that anyone who uses it invariably is blatantly lying or missing so much from the story that they might as well be.

I'm not easy to talk your way round and that is a very useful trait in this work. I will listen and will assess what you've said to see if there's anything I should be doing. Not could be doing, but should be doing to protect the revenue in the club. If someone starts swearing down, I just throw up the wall and wait for the moment to ask them to leave. Why mark yourself out as a chav by saying it and pray that no-one upstairs is counting the lies you've told sworn against your babies life?

Monday, October 01, 2007

Shoes (pt II)

In this work you have to make very quick decisions about people. You base this on many things but one of the best guides is shoes.

For the ladies, do they match the outfit, do they fit, can they walk in them, are they brand spanking new or have they seen some love over the years? The details of heel size, strappy, pointy, are all irrelevant against the big question. Are they spattered in vomit?

For the Gents, shoes seem a more permanent, less variable item of their wardrobe. Those around town on a Friday or Saturday night in scruffy trainers risk a very cold sober evening. Fashion trainers are fine in the right venue but unless dressing up in a downwards direction is called for could leave you on the street. Kickers, caterpillars and timberlands will likely see you staying on the street as big chav brands are very poorly thought of. A brand new pair of dress or 'dancin' shoes will stand you out in the crowd but a worn but polished pair will get you places. Again, vomit on the toes is still a no.